Granada, Spain

General Information

Regional secretariat

Administrative status

Chief city of the Province of Granada

Alhambra, Generalife and Albayzin, Granada

Registration Year


Historical function

Politics and culture

Location and site

In Upper Andalusia, at the foot of the Sierra Nevada, Granada is located near a rich irrigated plain. The historic city spreads out over three hills which offer a number of views. The Alhambra occupies the highest of the three hills.

Urban morphology

From the summit of its wooded hill, the Alhambra rises about 150 m. above the city. The Alhambra and the medieval Albayzín Quarter, which was constructed opposite it, make up a coherent ensemble. Their configuration reflects the Hispano-Moorish past of the city. The monuments that were later integrated into the urban fabric respect its original harmony.

The major achievements of the Nasrid Dynasty reflect a fabulous sense of sophistication; this is expressed even more in the city’s decor and perspective views than in its architecture and its gardens. Other monuments dating to the same period are spread throughout the Albayzín quarter; these include Casa de la Reina, Corral del Carbón, the court of the mosque which has become the San Salvador College and the first hermitage which was converted into the Church of San Sebastana. Adding to these monuments, houses with walled gardens make up the domestic architecture of this historic quarter.

Registration criteria

Criterion (i): Inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1984, the site of the Alhambra and the Generalife was extended to include the Albayzín Quarter in 1994, in accordance with the existing criteria. The site includes unique artistic achievements.

Criterion (iii): It is an exceptional testimony of 14th-century Muslim Spain.

Criterion (iv): It offers an invaluable example of the royal Arab residences of the medieval period.

Historical reference

  • The erection, in the 8th century, of an Arab fortress on the site of the present-day Saint Nicholas Square marked the beginning of Granada’s Moorish period.
  • The decline of the caliphate of Córdoba between 1002 and 1031 led to the establishment of small independent Muslim states, including the Kingdom of Granada, founded by the Zirid Dynasty, which ruled from 1010 until 1090. Within this political framework, the city of Granada emerged and continued the artistic work of the caliphs.
  • The kingdom was ruled by two Berber dynasties, the Almoravids and the Almohads, until the Nasrids came to power in 1236. Mohammed I, the founder of the Nasrid Dynasty, undertook the construction of the Alhambra in 1238. As an important centre of culture, the city provided a flourishing artistic environment.
  • The Kingdom of Granada was the last refuge for Iberian Islam after the Christian victory of Las Navas of Tolosa in 1212; this was a turning point of the Reconquest.
  • The takeover of Granada by the Catholic kings in 1492 put an end to the Nasrid reign and to the Muslim domination of Spain. Granada’s new rulers constructed palaces, religious buildings and other monuments. In the 16th century, Diego de Siloé, a pioneer of Plateresque architecture, enriched the city’s artistic landscape by building a cathedral, the Patio de la Chancilleria, and numerous portals.



6 September 2017


Granada, Spain

Southern Europe and Mediterranean

12 January 2015

Local Craftsmanship and Visual Pollution

Granada, Spain

Southern Europe and Mediterranean

11 April 2014


Granada, Spain

Southern Europe and Mediterranean

18 March 2014


Granada, Spain

Southern Europe and Mediterranean


Don Luis Miguel Salvador García

Ayuntamiento de Granada

Plaza del Carmen n° 5
Granada, España

+34.9.58 20 06 88

Da. Estrella López

Directora General de Turimo
Ayuntamiento de Granada

D. Juanjo Ibañez

Jefe de Gabinete de Alcaldía
Ayuntamiento de Granada

Dña Raquel Ruz

Concejala Delegada de Turismo y Participación Ciudadana
Ayuntamiento de Granada

Plaza del Carmen n° 5
Granada, España

+34 958 539 697

Sra. Gracia Peregrin

Técnica Superior de Congresos y Turismo
Agencia Albaicin

Sra Ferdaouss Boughlala

Agencia Albaicin-Granada

Calle Porteria de la Concepción, n 8
Granada, España

+34 958 18 00 79